Setting up a business: 10 things to keep in mind

home based business

Set a vision

Every entrepreneur begins with a vision. There is a profound passion to change something or disrupt a business line. It is important to frame a vision so there is 100% focus on what you set to achieve.

Fix your purpose

Every business needs to have one, a succinct expression of its purpose. A purpose is important not just for yourself, the entrepreneur but for your future customers, employees and the community that you will operate in. why you do what you do is an important question to answer. This will also help you and your team to stay committed to the larger scheme of things at all point of times.

Market Research

Your research should answer one simple question ‘why will consumers buy your product?’ It studies important elements like consumer behavior, touch points, cultural, societal and personal values. It is important to draw customer personalities and keep reworking on it. The market research will also at a later point of time help you draw the sales funnel.

An article on entrepreneur puts this together nicely

For companies of all sizes, the best market research is the research you do on your own. In-house market research might take the form of original telephone interviews with consumers, customized crunching of numbers from published sources or perhaps competitive intelligence you’ve gathered on your rivals through the social media. You can gather detailed research on customers, including their likes, dislikes and preferences, through Facebook, and use Google Analytics to sort out the numbers as they pertain to your web visitors. People are researching and making their opinions felt through their actions on the web, so you can gain a lot of marketing insight by looking closely at what is going on electronically.

Marketing Plan

A business plan is important because it is the blueprint for your success. A solid marketing plan forms the most integral part of your business plan. A marketing plan needs your time, research and a lot of attention. A well laid marketing strategy can help reveal opportunities from a new audience, a potential product line pitfalls in pricing, competition reaction etc.

A businessnewsdaily report gives this excellent insight from Robert J. Thomas, a marketing professor at the McDonough School of Business at Georgetown University, said the development of a marketing plan requires that you complete four specific tasks:

  1. Develop a very clear and focused insight into why a potential customer would use your business.
  2. Identify your target customers.
  3. Identify competitors that would also want your target customers
  4. Write down your brand-positioning statement for your target customers.

Develop your skills

Sign up for a lifelong learning course once you become an entrepreneur. An entrepreneur truly needs to be a jack of all trades and a master of the most critical ones, like says negotiation skills. Continually polishing your skills helps you make a better entrepreneur. Analyse skills critical for your business and have goals to improve.

Plan Plan Plan

Entrepreneurs don’t always understand that the planning process itself is of value. They have been advised they should have a business plan document ready to present to potential investors so they–sometimes reluctantly–devote the time to writing a business plan. Ideally, the document is the final product of a planning process that would be completed whether or not the company was actively seeking capital. The plan is very much like a road map. It helps you choose the best route to get to your destination–creating a successful venture.

Get your inner circle

Entrepreneurship is a long road, but having the right people around you makes the ride that much sweeter. Your inner circle will have people who you can turn to a solid business opinion, someone who is experienced. You will have friends who can pick you up after an investor drops out or a launch just didn’t go as per your plan. This circle should also have people who’ll tell you that you are going overboard and you need to come back to reality.

Delegate

We came across this gem of an article on entrepreneur that essentially describes what delegation is

For a few, delegating comes easily, maybe too easy. For others who are perfectionists, letting go of even the most trivial task is almost impossible. If you are in this second category, you probably don’t like the references behind your back that you are a “control freak” or a “micro-manager.”

Jan Yager, in her book “Work Less, Do More,” has outlined several key steps to effective delegation

  • Choose what tasks you are willing to delegate
  • Pick the best person to delegate to.
  • Trust the person you delegate to
  • Set a definite task completion date and a follow-up system.
  • Give public and written credit
  • Delegate responsibility and authority, not just the task

Learn about capital and funding

There is a lot to learn in this area – right from valuation of the company, to places where you can find a potential investor. In addition, you also need to know your legal responsibilities to investors. An entrepreneur should also know just how much capital he needs, how long will it last and asking for enough money.

Patience is a virtue

All of us know that patience is a virtue but very few of us are taught how to be patient and in different circumstances. Patience is a life skill and it has to be built. They say, ‘you have a lot of patience’, but none of us actually have it. It is a hard earned discipline; a life skill. You practice and apply it more, you become more patient. Patience helps you take stock of tricky situations calmly. It is an important asset to develop to build customer relations, employee relations and also the relations in your own personal life.

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